Mental Health in Refugees and Asylum Seekers

  • Meryam Schouler-OcakEmail author
  • Marianne C. Kastrup
Living reference work entry
Part of the Mental Health and Illness Worldwide book series (MHIW)


58 million refugees and asylum seekers are currently in the process of fleeing their homes. A high proportion of traumatised people with a serious mental disorder such as PTSD is among this population. Therefore, healthcare systems have to prepare themselves for this very heterogeneous population with different concepts of health and disease and with expectations about treatment depending on cultural background, traditional values, personal experiences and social worlds. To be able to cope with mental health needs among diverse multicultural populations health professionals need sufficient knowledge, competences and training. Furthermore, the legislation should be changed towards including more humanitarian aspects in mental health care. Additionally, data on the mental health of immigrants is scarce, so that it should be filled. Summing up, there is an urgent need for action on different levels.


Mental health Refugees and asylum seekers Healthcare Future prospects 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Psychiatry and PsychotherapyUniversity Psychiatric Clinic of Charité at St. Hedwig’s HospitalBerlinGermany
  2. 2.Speciallæge i psykiatriFrederiksbergDenmark

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